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Coast Guard Suspends Search In Atlantic For Missing Tenn. Woman

MIAMI (CBSMiami) – The U.S. Coast Guard has suspended its search for a missing 21-year-old Tennessee women who reportedly fell overboard off a cruise ship 47 miles east of Fort Lauderdale on Sunday night.

The Coast Guard announced Tuesday night after searching more than 2,300 square miles over a 46 hour period.

"It's always unfortunate when we have to suspend a search, because our main focus is to locate the individual and return her safely to her family," said Capt. Todd Lutes, 7th Coast Guard District chief of Inncident Management Branch. "Our thoughts and prayers remain with the family and friends of the missing woman."

According to Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines, the Allure of the Seas was sailing to Nassau, Bahamas on a seven-night voyage to the Caribbean when a guest witnessed the woman going overboard.

The ship's Captain immediately stopped the ship, turned around, and alerted the U. S. and Bahamian Coast Guard.

A search for the woman on the ship turned up empty and a review of the ship's closed-circuit camera footage observed the 21-year old female guest going overboard. She's said to be from Bartlett, Tennessee.

Two other ships that were close by at the time, the Carnival Fascination and Majesty of the Seas, assisted Allure of the Seas with the search until cleared by the Coast Guard.

"Royal Caribbean's Care Team is providing support to the guest's family and our thoughts and prayers are with them," said a statement from the cruise line.

The Coast Guard asked that anyone with information on the missing person contact the 7th Coast Guard District search and rescue coordinators at 305-415-6800.

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